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Andalusian recipes, travel, and design

Category: pie crusts

Sweet Spinach Pie with Basic Paleo Almond Crust

I found an interesting article the other day, “Three Ways Cooking Has Changed Over the Last 300 Years,” which I posted on my Facebook page.

“With help from food historian Annie Gray, Finnamore has been cooking – and blogging — her way through The Unknown Ladies Cookbook, a 300-year-old British compendium of family recipes. Jotted down by hand by several different women between 1690 and 1830, the recipes provide insights into the cooking habits of the Georgian and Regency periods. They also tell us quite a bit about how much culinary craft has changed over the centuries.” ~exert from “Three Ways Cooking Has Changed Over the Last 300 Years”.


The article intrigued me, and even more captivating were the use of some ingredients, such as spinach in a sweet pie. Yes, I know we use vegetables in many sweet versions, especially zucchini, carrots, potatoes… But somehow, I hadn’t thought of spinach as something for a dessert. However, having said that, this dish was not considered a dessert, but a second course! 


‘To Make a Spineage Tort:’ Sweet spinach tart – a surprising combination of sweet and savory ingredients. This recipe has been largely forgotten in Britain, but a very similar dish is still made in a parts of Provence during the Christmas celebrations. This would be served as a second course.

“Take 6 eggs, yolks & whites. Beat them well with a pint of sweet cream, a qr of a pd of crums of bread, a good handfull of spinage cut small, half a qr of currons, half a qr of almonds pounded wth a little rose water, half a nutmeg, half a pd of white sugar. Half a pound of drawn butter, 3 spoonfulls of brandy. Mix all well together. Lay paist thin at the bottom & sides of the dish & cross bar at top. 3 qrs of an hour bakes it.”

 I loved the sound of this and therefore have made my own version of sweet “spineage” tort, which I have found delicious.


My version is of course Paleo and Primal. The crust is a basic almond-coconut crust, of which I only made enough for a 6-inch pie. If you plan on making a larger pie, you may want to double up the crust recipe.


As for the filling: I also followed the basics of spinach, almonds, and eggs, added a bit of coconut flour for more of a baked-goods texture, and included the rosewater (the secret ingredient I’ve been mentioning on Instagram and Facebook). I know the rosewater can be overpowering for some, but personally I wouldn’t omit it. It adds depth and an exotic taste to the pie, and actually brings out a nice flavour in the spinach.

For a slightly less sweet version, reduce the coconut sugar to 3/4 cup.


Sweet Spinach Pie with Basic Paleo Almond Crust
Cuisine: Old English
Author: The Saffron Girl
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
One 6-inch pie.
  • For the pie crust:
  • 1 cup ground almonds (almond flour)
  • 1 tablespoon coconut flour
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 egg
  • pinch of sea salt
  • For the spinach filling:
  • 300g fresh spinach leaves (1 cup cooked)
  • 4 eggs, separated
  • 1 cup ground almonds (almond flour)
  • 2 tablespoons coconut flour
  • 1 cup coconut sugar
  • 1 teaspoon rosewater
  • pinch of sea salt
  1. For the crust:
  2. In a mixing bowl, knead all the ingredients together until a dough is formed.
  3. With your hands, press the dough into a pie plate, bottom and sides (I used a 6-inch round plate).
  4. Set aside.
  5. For the spinach filling:
  6. In a medium-sized pot, place the spinach and about 1 cup of water. At medium heat, bring to a boil, and cook about 5 minutes.
  7. Reduce the heat to low and cook an additional 5 minutes.
  8. Turn heat off and allow to cool in the pot with water.
  9. Once the spinach is cool, drain into a colander and press the spinach to remove all of the water. I pressed it with the back of a spoon.
  10. Put the spinach, egg yolks, rosewater and sea salt into a food processor. Pulse until a a puree is formed, about 1 minute.
  11. Add the almond four, coconut flour and sugar and pulse again until everything is well incorporated.
  12. Pour the dough into a mixing bowl.
  13. Beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form.
  14. Fold the egg whites into the spinach mixture. Mix well until no white is visible.
  15. Pour the spinach filling into the pie crust.
  16. Bake at 180C (350F) for 35-45 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out dry.


Rhubarb-Orange Frangipane Tart, Paleo Tart Crust & Rhubarb-Orange Compote

Well, you’ve hit the jackpot today! There are actually three recipes in today’s post. 😉

I wanted to steer away from the traditional rhubarb-strawberry crumble recipe and decided to make a frangipane tart instead. Of course, I kept the entire dessert Paleo-friendly, thereby creating a Paleo tart crust, Paleo compote and Paleo frangipane.


It may seem like a lot of work and a lot of time; however, aside from all the cleaning of utensils, blender and bowls, in reality this recipe is quite easy to make, all three components of it.


The tangy rhubarb is complemented by the sweet frangipane and the compote.


While the crust is rather neutral in keeping with a regular flour tart base.


Additionally, the compote can be used as a sauce base for a different type of pizza: Rhubarb-Chipotle Goat Cheese Pizza, added to a smoothie, as a spread or eaten by the spoonful!



Oh, and PS: this tart passed the “husband taste test”.. and the husband is a very picky dessert eater mind you…

Rhubarb-Orange Frangipane Tart
Author: The Saffron Girl
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 6-8
Makes one 9-in tart.
  • For the Rhubarb-Orange Compote:
  • 1 cup chopped rhubarb (about 2-3 stalks, cut into 1-inch pieces)
  • 2 oranges, peeled
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 3 tablespoons raw honey
  • 1/2 vanilla pod
  • 1 cup filtered water
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar of Modena
  • For the Tart Crust:
  • 1/2 cup ground almonds (almond flour)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons raw honey
  • 1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse sea salt
  • For the Frangipane:
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil or butter, melted
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 3/4 cups ground almonds
  • zest of one orange
  • 1/3 cup raw honey
  • 2 stalks rhubarb, cut into 1-inch pieces
  1. For the Rhubarb-Orange Compote:
  2. Place all of the ingredients, except the vinegar, in a pot and simmer until the rhubarb is cooked, about 10 minutes.
  3. Remove from heat.
  4. Add the balsamic vinegar and mix well.
  5. Set aside or place in a container and refrigerate. Makes about 2 cups.
  6. For the Tart Crust:
  7. Preheat oven to 180C (350F).
  8. Place all of the ingredients in a mixing bowl and knead with hands until a dough is formed.
  9. Place the dough into a tart pan and with hands spread evenly on the bottom and sides.
  10. Poke the bottom with a fork randomly.
  11. Bake for 10 minutes and remove from oven.
  12. For the Frangipane:
  13. Preheat oven to 180C (350F).
  14. In a blender, beat until smooth the coconut oil, eggs, honey and orange zest.
  15. Add the ground almonds and mix well.
  16. Pour evenly into the cooked Tart Crust.
  17. Place the rhubarb pieces into the frangipane in desired design.
  18. Bake for 40 minutes until the frangipane is dry.
  19. Pour about 1/2 cup or slightly more of the Rhubarb-Orange Compote over top and bake an additional 5 minutes.


Carrot Crust

As many of you may know, I’m very active on Instagram posting pictures and following others who share my interests in food and photography. The other day I came across a beautiful and intriguing picture by Farmgirl Gourmet for a pie crust made of sweet potatoes. I was hooked!


However, as I was out of sweet potatoes and had a 5-kilo bag of carrots waiting for my attention, I swapped out the vegetables and then added a few touches of my own. I love the resulting texture and I’m going to be making more of this with other veggies…

I used my crust for a “pseudo” Moroccan bastila or pie made with lamb meat. This crust is great both for savoury and sweet dishes and especially for a quiche, like the Farmgirl Gourmet’s original recipe.



  • 4 cups of grated, and squeezed* carrots
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 4 tablespoons coconut flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon cardamom (optional, and I included it for the lamb bastila, for which I made the crust)


  1. Preheat the oven to 180C (about 350F). Prepare a springform cake tin as follows: butter the bottom and sides and line with parchment paper. The butter is used so the paper will adhere to the pan.
  2. Add some olive oil (or additional, melted butter) on top of the paper and with your hands or a paper towel, spread the oil around the parchment paper. Set aside.
  3. Peel about 6-8 large carrots. I used a hand grater to grate them. Then I squeezed the water (carrot juice) out of them and measured the “dried” results into 4 cups. (I used a dry ingredients U.S. measuring cup.)
  4. Place the grated carrots in a large bowl. Add the butter and eggs, and with your hands mix well, cutting the butter into the mixture.
  5. Add the coconut flour and spices, and knead until all is well blended.
  6. Scoop the carrot mixture into the prepared cake tin and using your hands, spread it out evenly to form a pie shell (covering the sides of the tin as well as the bottom).  
  7. Baking time depends on what you will make with the crust afterwards. I baked mine for 35 minutes and then baked it again with the filling another 25 minutes.

*I squeezed the grated carrots between my hands, eliminating as much carrot juice as possible. (I had about 1/3 cup of juice, which was delicious on its own, after grating and squeezing 4 cups of grated carrots). You can also use a cheesecloth to squeeze the liquid out of the vegetables.